How to Troubleshoot the Briggs & Stratton Governor on a Tiller That Dies Out

Written by chris baylor
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How to Troubleshoot the Briggs & Stratton Governor on a Tiller That Dies Out
Briggs & Stratton builds small engines for tillers that are ideal for tilling garden soil. (ç•'でå'ãäºº image by kelly marken from

Briggs & Stratton manufactures a variety of small engines for lawn and garden implements such as lawnmowers, tillers, pressure washers and more. The governor on a Briggs & Stratton engine is designed to increase the throttle when the engine is under a heavy workload, and to decrease the throttle when less power is needed. If the engine is not running smoothly, you may need to troubleshoot the Briggs & Stratton governor on a tiller that dies out.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Open-end wrenches

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  1. 1

    Pull on the black rubber boot covering the tip of the spark plug to disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug.

  2. 2

    Locate the governor arm on the side of the engine with an open-ended wrench and inspect the spring and linkage that connects the arm to the carburettor. If the spring is stretched or the linkage is damaged, replace them with genuine Briggs & Stratton parts.

  3. 3

    Rotate the governor arm left and right. The arm should move smoothly, opening and closing the throttle control on the governor as you move the arm.

  4. 4

    Loosen the nut at the base of the governor arm one to two full turns. The arm should move much more freely.

  5. 5

    Increase the throttle control of the tiller to the fully open position, watching the direction that the governor arm moves as you open the throttle.

  6. 6

    Push on the governor arm as far as it will comfortably move in the same direction that it moved as you opened the throttle control. Tighten the nut at the base of the governor arm.

  7. 7

    Move the throttle control open and closed, and watch the governor arm rotate as you adjust the throttle control. The governor arm should still move freely, as in step 3.

  8. 8

    Start the engine and allow it to warm up for a few minutes. Increase the throttle to full speed and begin to use the tiller. If the governor is adjusted properly, the engine should run smoothly under nearly any workload at full speed.

Tips and warnings

  • To keep the engine from accidentally firing while working on the engine, always disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug before beginning to work on the engine.

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